Session Update: Snowmaggedon Edition
The General Assembly was not in session yesterday, January 22nd, because of the weather. Please be safe this weekend and check the National Weather Service for updates. Despite the shortened week, I have stayed busy fighting for evidence based gun safety laws and defending several bills that passed out of committee, including a campus sexual assault bill that improves communication between universities and law enforcement on sexual assault investigations.
GUN SAFETY: On Monday, I spoke on a point of personal privilege on the importance of common sense gun laws. We cannot keep ignoring the senseless loss of life due to firearms, and I am committed to carrying legislation to address Virginia’s lax gun safety laws. This year, I patroned five bills (SB 138, SB 156, SB 214, SB 323, SB 546) aimed at protecting Virginia’s citizens from firearm violence.
SEXUAL ASSAULT: My bill strengthening campus sexual assault response procedures passed the Senate Education and Health Committee unanimously. SB 83 would require that Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) between universities and local law enforcement indicate which law enforcement organization would have the primary responsibility for a sexual assault investigation. The bill would also require that the MOUs specify the procedures for sharing information during an investigation. An inclusive stakeholder group convened as part of Governor McAuliffe’s Task Force on Combating Campus Sexual Assault recommended the strategy contained in SB 83. I have bills coming before committees next week that would raise the minimum wage, require the reporting of LGBT hate crimes and make absentee voting easier.
Stay tuned, as I continue to fight for our shared values and for a better quality of life in the 31st District and throughout the Commonwealth.